In short: A good test of how my training was progressing - answer C+ could do better In full: I'm edging myself back into full fitness and this was a good test of how far I'd come. I was planning on running 10:45mm at an even pace and then stumbled across a RW Pacer offering 11mm.
I'd never run with or near a pacer before, so thought I'd give it a bash. It was great ! So, thanks to Kerry from Runners World for doing a great job (he also hit the half-way point spot on 1:12). The tricky bit was keeping pace with him on the big uphills. I failed at this, but managed to catch up again on the downhills and flats.
Race organisation was excellent, loads and loads of marshalls, some cars on the narrow lanes, but nothing dangerous. The T-Shirt was not the best quality (nowhere near Bedford Harriers HM Rugby Shirt quality), and it was disappointing to not find Gatorade on the course - only at the finish.
Compared to the Colloseum Race HQ last year, I quite enjoyed the marquee in the park - however it was quite mild yesterday. Last year it was bloody freezing and I was grateful for the indoor HQ pre-race. Date of review: February 7, 2011
In short: A really good, pretty tough race - and got a PB In full: Did this last year and enjoyed it so came again. Was not disappointed - nice challenging undulating course, with about 6 hills, two or three pretty tough. Some nice scenery and excellent traffic control on roads. Great training for anyone wanting to maintain an even pace over varying gradients. Well organised and friendly. Would've preferred more water stations (there were only 3 or 4) and a medal is always welcome but otherwise not a bad word to say. Marquee worked well and baggage collection fine. Took 3 mins off my PB getting round in 01:33 so don't think this is necessarily slow. Date of review: February 7, 2011
In short: Well organised but hilly... In full: The run was very well organised, the stewards were informative and supportive and unlike other people who have posted feedback I felt there were a sufficient amount of water stops.
There did appear to be a high proportion of club runners but personally, as an unaffiliated runner, I find that provides me with additional motivation as opposed to being intimidating.
There wasn't a large amount of support on the route but those who were there gave 100%.
One thing to mention is the hills. Yes I understand that if you go up you'll come down at some point but the course seemed overly undulating and that's the only reason I'm not sure I'd do it again.
That said it was first half-marathon and I'm very happy with my time so I'm probably moaning for nothing... Date of review: February 7, 2011
In short: Great Race, well orrganized In full: Very well organised race. A few hills but they don't last long, and the second half is pretty much downhill all the way. Friendly, supportive marshalls. My only gripe would be the lack of medal - for an event of this size and status it should have one. A big thanks to all who laid on the event Date of review: February 7, 2011
In short: Definitely will be back again next year ... In full: My second time running this event and I loved it, even the hills,(which I tackled with a new strategy this time, which paid off)as I managed a nearly 10 minutes speed improvment on my time from last year and brought me in under the 2 hour mark ... Weather was perfect for me and overall there was a good atmosphere apart from some elbow action of some club runners at the beginning of the race.
Marshalls were plenty and very supportive and as I remembered the route from last year it was much easier to plan for climbs and descents and made it really fun. Hill training in the run up to this event is definitely advisable and was worth integrating into my training schedule ...
Still no medal at the end - but hopefully that will change for next year ;) Date of review: February 7, 2011
In short: Up and down, up and down, up and down... In full: A very enjoyable first running of the race for me and I thought the organisation was great. Plenty of toilets (baby wipes were a neat touch) and the tent HQ was warm and worked well.
The hills were tough, I think there were about 6 in all, but yes you can make up the time lost when going up by whizzing down. Always tough on the knees though!
I thought three water stations plus a sponge station were plenty and they were advertised in the race programme sent out to all so no-one should have been surprised what there was. I guess if runners want more then they could use a bottle belt and take their own drink?
Marshalls were numerous, friendly and encouraging and I thought the local support was good. The kid sitting on a wall with his mega phone made me smile!
A couple of very minor gripes - the queue in the finish funnel was a little slow so it does get cold as you stand around for a few minutes. Plenty to drink, so that was good. And yes, a medal would be nice but I knew there wasn't going to be one so wasn't disappointed. It's just nice to be able to go home and show it off.
Overall, this was a very good race and well organised. The split start between senior mens and ladies/veterans seemed to merge seamlessly after a couple of hundred metres. Well done and thank you to all involved. Date of review: February 7, 2011
In short: Extremely hilly but well worth it In full: The first race of the year and there were more hills than I anticipated, although saying that 'what goes up must come down'. Normally I am only fit enough to do a 5 mile race at this time of year so am happy with the result that I achieved. Marshalls were great and very enthusiastic and the people giving out the water were very good too. On a personal point may be would have appreciated another water station and would just like to thank everyone for making an effort as it seemed extremely organised and friendly, so THANKYOU. Date of review: February 7, 2011
In short: Hilly race but nice downhills In full: Greatrace. Was my first Watford half and managed to get my pb down by to 1'37. Only thing that could do with tidying up is the baggage organisation. Also i'm sure people would be happy to pay an extra couple of quid for a medal. Those Hills definately deserve a medal!! What goes up must go down so I think you more than make up for the hills on the downhill! Especially if you have a nice tailwind!! Date of review: February 6, 2011
In short: Good organisation, medal would be nice or a technical top In full: Very well organised. Tent in the park an improvement. Medal would be nice. Similar tee shirt every year which is pretty basic. One more water station maybe. Date of review: February 6, 2011